Going to zero waste can seem intimidating at first. It feels that each of us has so little impact on the environment when most of the waste comes from the big industries.
It is primarily factual, but if each of us makes a small effort, it will make a significant change. I think that we, the individuals, do have the power to make a difference.
Before you begin your zero waste journey
I have to say that every small change is meaningful. Even reading these lines can make a difference. It’s not about being perfect, it’s not all or nothing, it’s about being aware and making the right choice, so don’t hesitate to start! so How to start then?
The average American throws away 4.4 pounds of trash daily. It may not seem a lot, but with 323.7 million people living in the United States, that sums up to about 728,000 tons of garbage every day – enough to fill more than 63,000 garbage trucks.
Buying less is the first and most effective step you can take to reduce waste.
I know it’s easier said than done, so here are some questions you should ask yourself before buying
Do you really need it? Is this thing you are about to buy really necessary for you?
It is challenging to separate between ‘want’ and ‘need,’ especially when what you are about to buy is helpful but unnecessary.
You can buy better quality products that will last longer when you buy less.
Use what you have.
Be more organized with your current items. If you can find them easily, you will use them.
Take care of your things so they will last for a long time and be in good condition so you can make good use of your purchases.
If you need something, you don’t always have to buy all new products. You can use your creativity to adjust the things you already have to your unique purpose.
When you shop for second-hand items, you are doing yourself, and the environment some good,
Shopping second-hand decreases the demand for new retail goods, especially clothes, creating less pressure on companies to produce large quantities of products.
Sometimes when buying used items, you can afford better quality products than the new ones that you can afford purchasing.
When you are shopping locally, you are purchasing goods produced in your local community, lowering the travel miles. You are reducing the environmental impact of your interests.
Buying local goods reduces fuel consumption and air pollution. It creates fewer carbon footprints through overseas shipping or long truck journeys.
There is no need for shipping facilities or packing.
If you decide you need to make the purchase, think about the whole aspect of the product, where it was made, how long it will last, how many times you will use it, and where it is going after you are done using it.
Whatever you buy, don’t settle. Make sure this is the best quality product you can buy and precisely what you want.
The most important thing is that you start somewhere.
Going zero waste is a lifetime journey and can only be achieved step by step.
“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.”
― Theodore Roosevelt